Blog: Chile with Concha y Toro - Day II
Olly Wehring | 21 January 2015
After yesterday's introduction to Chile, today was all about Concha y Toro – that's to be expected, seeing as they invited me here.
About 40 minutes out of Santiago, in the Maipo valley, we spent most of the day at Bodega Pirque. The winery, which is the birthplace of Concha y Toro, has been updated to welcome tour groups to look around the estate house and to visit the fabled Casillero del Diablo - the devil's cellar. We'll have more details on the facility for you tomorrow, so keep your eyes peeled.
After taking the tour, we headed to the homestead for a thorough tasting of CyT's portfolio – starting off with the Casillero del Diablo Sauvignon Blanc 2014 and Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 – two wines my wife and I 'taste' at least a couple of times a month, specifically, when it's around 2130, we've finished our dinner but run out of wine and the nearest shop is just around the corner. Drinking these wines at the home of founder Don Melchor de Santiago Concha seemed a bit close to home, but we returned to the higher ground thanks to a round of Carmeneres, led by the Terrunyo brand.
Finally, as lunch approached, we had what was described as “the main course”: six parcels that comprise the 2014 vintage of Don Melchor, a GBP50 (US$75) per bottle blend that is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon. Don Melchor is downplayed as a CyT brand on the bottle's label, which suggests to me the company is all too aware of consumers' perceptions of its price positioning.
At lunch (outside on the homestead's porch in warm sunshine), I was lucky enough to sit next to Isabel Guilisasti, the head of CyT's fine wine division (and sister to company CEO Eduardo). What followed was a fascinating look at her attempts to pull the firm's super-premium offerings out from the shadow of Casillero del Diablo and CyT's battle to balance being the owner of a global brand and being a Chilean wine producer.
We then took a 15-minute drive to Almaviva, a joint-venture winery set up in the late-1990s by CyT and Baron Philippe de Rothschild. The highlight of our brief tour of the (much as I loathe the phrase) state-of the art winery, which has a breathtaking backdrop of the Andes, was a tasting that included the 1996 vintage. And, no, I didn't use the spit bucket. Nor did I leave any.
To round off the day, we're heading to CyT's offices back in Santiago, where I'm due to sit down with Sebastian Aguirre, marketing director for the company's premium wines. The fruits of these labours will run on just-drinks later this month.
Bacardi's 42 Below vodka brand has found a novel way to use the lemons left over from cocktail-making: Turn them into liquid soap....
Philadelphia’s soda tax came into force on Sunday, and is reportedly causing a stir in the city's check-out aisles....
Earlier this month, I was most-kindly invited by Accolade Wines to visit the Royal Albert Hall in London. The reason? They wanted to see a tennis great in action, and then give them a guided tour thro...
Do you like whisk(e)y? And, I mean, really like whisk(e)y? Are you at a loose end in the first half of 2017? If so, then I've found just the job for you....
- Interview Berry Bros & Rudd CEO Dan Jago - Part I
- The threat of excess choice in beer is over-stated
- Key trends for the beer category in 2017 - Focus
- Key trends for the spirits sector in 2017 - Focus
- Key trends for the alcohol category in 2017
- Pernod Ricard's Method and Madness Irish whiskey
- Premium to counter mainstream in gin - research
- Bacardi lines up Canadian bottling plant closure
- Pernod unveils new St Patrick's Day Jameson bottle
- Wm Grant names Victor Jerez business director
- Global vodka insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global rum insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global Cognac insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Battle of the Generations - The fight for iGen, Millennial, Gen X and Baby Boomer consumers
- Global gin insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends